The Logan County Cougars began their 2015 season with a trip to Morgantown to play the Butler County Bears. In spite of a quick start, the Cougars were out-gunned by the Bears and fell 46-6 to the home team.
Many of Cougar Nation had hoped that Logan County would be able to avenge the 41-0 shutout loss to the Bears at LCHS last year. While the point differential in this matchup was only slightly better, the Cougars played hard and this year’s game was much closer than the final score would indicate.
Head Coach Steve Duncan’s team was fast out of the gate. After the Bears won the opening coin-toss and deferred the ball to the second half choose to defend the western side of the gridiron. This put the setting sun directly in the face of the Cougars and many fans in attendance feared would thwart the Cougar game plan.
The setting sun, directly in the eyes of the Cougars, probably did cause second thoughts about any pass play, but it did not stop the running game. After a 25 yard kickoff return by Robert Dancer, Billy Vick would carry the ball three straight times for gains of 32, 30, and 7. Only a few moments into the game, and the 2015 season, the Cougars had driven inside their opponent’s ten-yard line for a first-and-goal.
The Butler County Bears, with this home-opener, had begun their 5oth anniversary football season on their heels. It was perhaps the 50th anniversary season pride that helped them to clamp down on the Cougar running game.
After unsuccessful attempts to get the ball into the end zone, the Cougars faced a fourth down inside Bear four-yard line. A delay of game penalty pushed the visitors back to near the 10 yard line. After an incomplete pass attempt, the Bears took over on downs at the 8:22 mark in the first quarter.
The Cougars were able to contain the Bears drive and after three consecutive incomplete passes by the Butler County quarterback, Rex Henderson, the punt gave the ball to the Cougars at the Butler County 46 yard line. Henderson would redeem himself, however, when two plays later he would grab a tipped pass and return it 70 yards for the game’s first score. At 5:31 in the first quarter, Logan County trailed 0-7.
For the remainder of the half and, it seemed most of the game, the Logan County football team would struggle to find consistency and to avoid mistakes. Meanwhile, Butler County would capitalize at nearly every opportunity.
The Cougars have a good running game and kept it close thanks to it. The Bears rushed for 162 yards in the game, the Cougars rushed for 147. The difference-maker in the game was the quarterback play; the Bears allowed the Cougars no passing yards. Meanwhile, Henderson was 17 for 25 passing for 186 yards and four touchdowns. He also ran the one interception back for a 70 yard TD.
The Cougars scored their first touchdown of the 2015 season in dramatic fashion. In the third quarter of the game, while the Cougars trailed 26-0, Robert Dancer made a leaping grab of a Henderson pass attempt for an interception. The next play, A.J. Sydnor ran 45 yards for the touchdown. The point after attempt was no good and at 10:07 in the third quarter the Cougars trailed 6-26.
The Bears would win the game with a final score of 46-6.
Next up for the Cougars is their home-opener. This Friday, August 28, the Cougars host the Class 6A Muhlenberg County Mustangs. The Mustangs lost their first game of the season on the road to Apollo, 14-35. Kickoff scheduled for 7pm.